Ambassador Lan Lijun addresses HKCBA Annual Canada-China Business Forum
On May 4, upon the invitation of Hong Kong Canada Business Association (HKCBA), H.E. Lan Lijun, Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to Canada, delivered a keynote speech at the annual Canada-China Business Forum in Vancouver on China's economic update and outlook, response of the Chinese Government to the financial crisis, Hong Kong's unique position in China-Canada trade relations, Hong Kong's comparative advantages and prospects for trade between China and Canada. Present at the forum were around 300 representatives from Canada's three levels of governments, companies, cultural and educational organizations and media. Mr. John Tsang Chun-wah, JP, Financial Secretary of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region was also present at the speech.
Ambassador Lan briefed the audience with an update on China's economic policies and strategies taken by the Chinese Government to address the global financial turmoil, saying that the impact of the global financial crisis is far-reaching. China's economy is confronted with major difficulties: external demand waned; exports have been on decline; some enterprises are having a hard time in their production and business operation; and employment is becoming more and more difficult. To counter the international financial crisis and maintain steady and relatively fast economic growth, China has timely adopted a proactive fiscal policy, a moderately easy monetary policy and a package plan to expand domestic demand and boost economic growth. These measures are producing positive initial results, including fairly strong domestic consumption demand, steadily rising investment demand, which shows that China's policies are active and effective. In face of the current crisis, China will continue to follow the opening-up policy and unswervingly pursue a win-win strategy. China will work with the international community to tackle the financial crisis and in doing so promote world peace and development.
On Hong Kong's unique position and role, Ambassador Lan pointed out that Hong Kong is geographically unrivalled. The city connects the east and the west. Hong Kong's economy and that of the Mainland are mutually complimentary. Hong Kong is the gateway for China's trade with Canada and a frontrunner in international business and financial centers. A 2009 blue paper by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences singled out Hong Kong as the most competitive Chinese city of the year. The Chinese Government pays close attention to the development of Hong Kong's financial sector. During Premier Wen Jiabao's recent meeting with Mr. Donald Tsang, chief executive of Hong Kong SAR, he stressed that Hong Kong is irreplaceable as an international financial center. The Central Government will be there when Hong Kong is in need.
Ambassador Lan stated that economies of China and Canada are highly complimentary and there is huge potential for further cooperation. China and Canada should take hold of the immense opportunities and enhance cooperation. Opportunity knocks but once and time and tide wait for no man. Strengthening China-Hong Kong-Canada Tripartnership not only benefits all parties involved, but also the Asia-Pacific region and the world beyond. Ambassador Lan calls for increased confidence from all parties to tide over the difficulties and bring the tripartnership to a new height.
Ambassador Lan met with Mr. John Tsang Chun-wah before the speech. They exchanged views on ways to enhance cooperation between the Mainland and Hong Kong.
The speech was covered by Chinese and English media in Vancouver.